Week 13 - Finale and Reunion
The end of Survivor is near, but first you have to get there. Spencer wins immunity in a stair-building/puzzle making challenge, so he ends up immune to a secret plan Kimmi machinated by Kimmi. Instead of being on the bottom of a foursome, Kimmi wants to team up with Keith and Wentworth and blindside Jeremy out of the game. While Kimmi reassures the rest of the foursome (Spencer, Tasha, Jeremy) that she is game with splitting the votes between Keith and Kelley, she's obviously lying. Spencer and Tasha sense something in awry and plead with Jeremy not to trust Kimmi and instead all vote as a solid trio. Put all the votes on Wentworth because she definitely doesn't have an idol, Spencer says. TEE HEE HEE, viewers laugh at home. So the two targets of the evening are people holding secret idols? This should be fun!
Tribal Council time! Finally it's admitted there are alliances at this point in the game and not only voting blocs of convenience. The assumption is Keith or Kelley Wentworth will go home tonight and either will do anything to last another three days. Spencer totally outs the entire evening's plan to vote three strong and not split votes, leaving Kimmi out to dry which only confirms her suspicions she is the odd gal out of her supposed alliance. Spencer whispers to Wentworth that she's fine, but she reminds the group last time she was "fine" she had to play an idol to save herself. Guys, it's gonna be a Rock Off. The votes are cast and then magic happens. Kelley Wentworth plays her second idol. THEN Jeremy gets up and plays his second idol. Basically everyone is crapping themselves because something unheard of happens: every single vote is null and void.
This is when the pure chaos and scattered nature begins, not to mention the paranoia when Jeremy realizes Kimmi of all people betrayed him (and he gets pretty fiesty). First there's a revote where no one can vote for Spencer (immunity holder) or Kelley/Jeremy (idol players), and that leads to a 3/3 split between Tasha and Kimmi. Now here's where it gets to be a real confusing mess, like so confusing Probst has to do a play-by-play from the live reunion: Jeremy, Kelley, Spencer, and Keith need to come to a unanimous decision of who to eliminate between Kimmi and Tasha. If the four cannot make a decision, Tasha and Kimmi become immune and then by default as the odd-man-out without immunity, Keith would be eliminated. In case you're wondering, yes I just gave myself a migraine trying to make sense of it all again. Of course Jeremy and Spencer aren't budging about losing Tasha, so it's basically do they agree to eliminate Kimmi or sacrifice Keith. Keith almost falls on the sword for Kimmi, but his ally Wentworth helps talk him out of it and keeps Keith. After some great attempts to scheme and change the game, it's Kimmi who loses out on it all and joins the jury. For real, I need an Excedrin.
With imminent game death approaching, the Immunity Challenges are crucial for Kelley Wentworth and Keith. The Immunity Challenge is to race through a giant obstacle course that looked like the way you drew sunsets as a kid with long sunrays beaming into the sky. Anyways, Wentworth pulls out the victory to secure her spot in the final four. But Kelley isn't planning to move along without her tightest ally, so she constructs one of the best fake immunity idols I've seen and has Keith make a few obvious shows of the idol wrapped in cloth with the note. Jeremy gives the package the total side-eye and worries that this could spell his doom, so after several attempts to catch Keith's eye, he suggests/agrees to vote off Spencer. Anything to save his butt! Sadly at Tribal Council, the fake idol doesn't detract from the obvious plan. In a vote of 3-2, Keith Nale is voted out of the game and American weeps.
The final Immunity Challenge of the season is a test of reflexes and speed, as the survivors use only one hand to drop and catch balls through a spiraling chute. If the ball drops, you'reeeee out. Jeremy ends up winning immunity, guaranteeing him a spot in the final three which leads him to an emotional breakdown about doing this all for his family. Wentworth also breaks down because she knows the ball drop basically ended her game. But she doesn't go out without a fight. Jeremy's decision now is about who he could beat in the final three, so Wentworth tries to get Jeremy to dump Spencer instead of her with some valid arguments of the moves his made and great speaking skills. Jeremy knows Kelley and Spencer are both strong adversaries, so who would he have a better chance to beat? Jeremy even teases viewers with the idea of forcing a tie to send to a fire making battle, which is so cruel to tease us with because we fans love fire. At Tribal Council, Kelley pleads her case and explains why Spencer is a threat to win. Spencer in turn explains why Kelley is the bigger threat, but doesn't stop. He gets a little too defensive, saying that should Jeremy vote him off he'd spend all his energy turning the jury against Jeremy. Eaaaaasy Spencer. I'm all about passion to stay, play, and win, but at times Spencer's big argument comes off as petulant - a total turnoff for the jury. Ultimately, Jeremy chooses to stay loyal to his alliance and Kelley Wentworth is eliminated. Ah, so close on my winner's pick yet again!
Jeremy, Tasha, and Spencer celebrate their final three status with their breakfast feast and a look in the mirror at their emaciated bodies. But who cares, it's FINAL TRIBAL COUNCIL TIME! There's no opening remarks and instead it jumps right into the jury questioning. Turns out, the jury doesn't care for Spencer, with Kimmi hoping her kids wouldn't be like Spencer and Savage disliking Spencer's arrogance and idea to turn the jury against Jeremy if he was eliminated. Spencer is also questioned on his constant flipping and betrayals in the game, which Kass points out is the same stuff she did their first time around and he lambasted her for such gameplay. Karma by Kass - it's real. Jeremy's basically only in trouble for showboating and being rude after Kimmi betrayed him, which he apologizes for because he was upset. Tasha gets a few scraps of questions, which is in no way surprising. For a girl who called everyone else a goat, the self-fulfilling prophecy is amusing. Also, apparently Spencer and Tasha were aligned the whole time, tighter than her and Jeremy. Ugh the bonds of Cagayan live on. And of course season 31 is not complete without beating us to death with the term "voting blocs" one last time, which Tasha attributes to the constant tribe swaps, but also all cite that it was necessary this time to flip more than usual. What I know is I cannot wait for season 32 so I don't have to hear the phrase "voting blocs" on TV until AT LEAST fall of 2016. Wiglesworth uses her final question to retread the "Pick a number" question she received her first time around, which surely someone told her to do. But Jeremy brings the house down in his final question, revealing the epic truth bomb that Val is home pregnant and he couldn't talk about it as it would make him a target and he was playing for his family the whole time. The jury is in tears and it's the moment that Tasha and Spencer realize they are not winning this game.
At the big live reunion, Probst reveals the votes and it's a unanimous vote: Jeremy is the winner of Survivor Cambodia: Second Chance. Jeremy played an excellent social game and deserves such a victory (and his 10 votes helped me win my Survivor pool, so I'll take it!). As you regular readers will know, I hate recapping reunions so here's a quick rundown. Jeremy knew he'd be a sympathetic target if people knew he was a firefighter with a baby on the way so he kept his secret locked up for 39 days. Everyone felt pressure to please the fans that voted them on and make big moves. Wentworth was underestimated out there and Keith can't seem to talk on the reunions without looking teary-eyed. America is obsessed with Joe enough to give him a full segment, therefore making Joe the new school Rupert. Spencer temporarily stopped watching the show and still loves his girlfriend. Terry's son Danny got a heart transplant and is OK now. And next season on Survivor Kaoh Rong, everyone is getting injured which makes me think perhaps there are 18 corporeal ghosts walking the Earth, waiting to crossover until after their season airs. Can't wait until February 17th!
And the moment you've all been waiting for: the Pre-Show Winner Prediction Winners. Congratulations to the four people below who picked Jeremy to win. If only I left my San Juan Del Sur prediction more open-ended to say Jeremy would win Survivor in general and not his specific season because then I could brag more. But congratulations to my four winners!
[All images credited to CBS]